special announcement & giveaway: “giving credit” prints are here!
Posted in (blog)house news, pia's photos, street cred May 27th, 2011 by pia

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UPDATE: I’ve decided to wait until there are 100 comments on this post before I announce the winners and before I continue posting in the (blog)house. So, please help spread the word, post this post on your blogs, let’s all help to get this message out there! Victoria from sfgirlbybay wrote a lovely post about it today – thank you vic! And there have been some great comments & conversation on her post in response to it already. One thing that comes about in conversation time & time again with this subject is that bloggers fear that they have to ask permission every time they post about someone’s work  – please let me clarify – this poster’s message is not targeted to people who promote other artists work – for example, I’m fully aware that people write posts about my work and they have not first asked me permission, I personally do not have a problem with that because I appreciate the exposure. Instead, this poster is to raise awareness and educate bloggers – new and old – who take images off people’s sites and do not credit the image at all, and do not bother to find out who created the image.  At the very least my fellow bloggers, we need to credit the ORIGINAL source – not the last place you saw it, but the original source. Thank you to all who have commented on this post so far, and to those who have helped spread the message. px

PS these prints which are for sale in special limited edition by Mammoth Collection are NEW & IMPROVED – you may have noticed on the original poster there were a number of little mistakes, but since then I had help from my dear friend Therese who helped form the original poster into a beautiful, printable piece of art. So, if you are blogging about the print, please use the NEW print, not the old one. Thank you!
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You thought I’d forgotten all about “giving credit”, didn’t you? But I hadn’t at all, in fact, I’ve been working determinedly this past month with the awe-inspiring online print house Mammoth Collection, turning our original ‘streetcred’ image credit flowchart into something rather spectacular.

With many thanks to Troy & Ben from Mammoth, and my dear friend + designer Therese Petre who helped me shape the original piece into poster format, I would (finally!) like to announce that the “giving credit” print is now, officially, for sale…

It comes in four gorgeous colourways: Storm Cloud (pictured above), Fuschia (pictured below)…

Deep Sea

and Butterscotch

And they each come in four sizes: 8×10(edition of 200), 11×14(edition of 100), 16×20 (edition of 20)and a whopping 24×30(edition of 10). Each print is made in-house using archival pigment inks on heavyweight 100% cotton fibre archival paper, and each is numbered by hand and signed. For more info about the prints, Troy & Ben asked me some questions for their fab Mammoth blog, click here to read the full interview.

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The extra exciting news is that Mammoth are offering to giveaway 2 $20 vouchers as part of the launch of the collection. This means 2 lucky (blog)house readers can choose an 8×10 “giving credit” print in any colour or put the voucher toward one of the larger prints! To be in the chance to win, just write a comment on this post about why you think giving credit is important.

On Wednesday, June 1st we’ll announce the winners.

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A big thank you to Erin, Chelsea, Lisa, Nichole, and Amanda for being such wonderful support and inspiration throughout this giving credit journey. It’s very exciting to know that our email conversation some months back have amounted to these beautiful prints. And a never-ending hug to my dear friend Yvette for offering her incredibly handmade fonts, of which I do believe make these prints so special. Each of us hope that this little initiative will spark the beginning of other online projects as well as be able to create funds to put toward an education+arts foundation of sorts. Small steps first, but what a wonderful beginning.

Please feel free to spread the word about the prints and special giveaway on your blogs, to your friends, or to people in the street! You are welcome to use any of the photos in this post to help spread the word – I give you my permission with one request: “give credit where credit is due”.

Thank you mes amis!

xx

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would you like to join me in vancouver in september?
Posted in behind the scenes, canada, pia's photos, stylists May 26th, 2011 by pia

Oh I’ve been dying to tell you this news for so long, and the moment has finally arrived. To say I’m excited, or ecstatic, or even ‘over the moon’ would all be understatements.

As most of you already know, I love Canada – I love the land, I adore the people, culture and history. So when Angela from Ace Camps asked if I’d like to lead a workshop and if so, where in the world would I like to be while leading this workshop, I said Vancouver…

This workshop will be about finding inspiration in the everyday through styling and photography, and I’ll be sharing with you how I go about my work and life, doing just that:

“The core of the workshop will be about enhancing your everyday; finding beauty in the ordinary; learning to see your surroundings in a new light and being uplifted by the simple things in life.”

You will not need the best or latest camera gear, instead I will teach you how to get the best out of what you have. We’ll be doing some mini photo shoots around the city at some amazing locations (including some of the local boutiques of course), and we’ll learn how to create beautiful images as well as get more out of our everyday. Ace Camps are workshop-holidays, so during the days together we will get a chance to roam the surrounding land on our own, perhaps head to Whistler for the day and get some mountain air…

…Then we’ll head to Granville Island, and check out the incredible farmers markets, artisan studios and Emily Carr Institute

We’ll wander, we’ll chat, and we’ll gather some of our found treasures and learn how to create some magical images…

Oh, this is going to be so. much. fun. I do hope you can join me! The workshop will be from September 22 – 27, and all the details including itinerary and travel information are right here. These are intimate workshops and places are limited, so please make sure you follow the steps and register as soon as possible if you would like to secure your place. Boy oh boy oh boy, I can’t believe I’ll be in Vancouver in less that 4 months time…

wandering around Yaletown, care to join me?

I took these photos on my old canon AE-1 film camera about 7 years ago while wandering around granville island, I love the softness of the light and that beautiful tree
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Thank you Angela from Ace Camps for asking me to be one of your workshop instructors, it’s such a privilege to be part of an incredible bunch of creative people, all of whom I admire.

xx

Workshop details:

+click here for trip details
+click here for itinerary
+click here for travel info + payment
+click here to register

+and click here to learn more about Ace Camps.

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wandering window displays in sydney…
Posted in my heart wanders, nature, recent work, stores May 24th, 2011 by pia

gathering my supplies for the window displays

It’s been a lot of fun gathering leaves and tree branches from parks and the side of the road, then installing all this found nature into shop windows. It’s incredibly satisfying, especially when I see people stop on the street and take a look – taking a moment out of their busy day to see something a little unusual, hopefully capturing their hearts and imaginations.

The first window in Sydney I installed was at the bustling Better Read Than Dead on King St, Newtown. This was one of my favourites to install, I think because I had the chance to incorporate some of Tracey Deep‘s incredible floral sculptures…

Tracey let me choose a number of pieces in her studio. I settled on these marvelous sphere sculptures, and some delightful dried banksia branches. I thought they might just work perfectly hanging from the ceiling next to my old chair, to create a kind of dream-like forest scene – a place to sit quietly and read a chapter or two from your favourite book. I used the packing paper flowers as well, and cut out some of my butterfly illustrations…

The cushion is something I’d made years ago with some left over sample fabric from Signature Prints. The backdrop comprises of linen strips that I’d used in the houseboat for curtains, and the leaves I found at Callan Park…

The next window I created was at sweet Oscar & Friends in Surry Hills. This window had quite different dimensions – it was tall and skinny, with only a small ledge for sitting props. So for this window I decided to focus on the glass itself and print then trace an entire passage from within the book…

Once I put the text up on the window to trace, I loved its roughness and was tempted to leave the strips of printed text as is…

Above is my little work station while creating the window.

It started to get dark rather quickly and I needed the outside light to be able to trace the text, so I had to stop taking photos of it and focus.  It was labour intensive, but once I finished and stripped the paper off, I loved the results. Then I wondered, what to do with the rest of the window? And how to draw the eye to the text? Well, I just happened to have found a huge eucalyptus branch the day before which had fallen from a tree in a car park. So I installed that up against the side of the window – I was pleasantly surprised to find that it was an ideal fit. Then to create an autumn tree effect, I attached branches of dried leaves along with some ribbon from the top of the window…

While I was searching for which passage of text to use a few days prior to installing the display, I opened the book and unexpectedly, it flopped open to one of the beginning pages that talks about how my trip to Paris came about. In it I mention that I was having an after-shoot drink with an art director friend – that after-shoot drink just happened to be around the corner from Oscar & Friends, at a neighbouring bar. So now here I was just around the corner but 4 years on, making a window display about the book that I wrote based on the journey I took that stemmed from that very conversation. I find that amazing. Anyway, back to the window display: It was pitch black outside by the time I finished the window, but I took a photo regardless of the lack of light…

And then before I headed off to Brisbane the next day, I took a quick detour back to Oscar & Friends to take a photo of it in the daylight…

The beauty of doing window displays is that they are so much about being there, in the moment – you have to be there to really see it, as windows are not easy to photograph with reflections and all. There are always lots of textures and layers which is what makes them wonderful, 3d forms of art.

Next up was the fabulous Shearers in Leichhardt… hello Norton St…

This time Ashlea and Romain were there to help (merci beaucoup mes amis!), so we got the window installed in next to no time. I love that all the props I’ve used in all these windows have been found, salvaged or handmade. For this window, I found a lovely branch the day before while driving through the residential streets of Bondi Beach. We attached it with fishing line, and then attached the paper flowers and scattered the leaves around the base, along with copies of the book…

Thank you Shearers, Oscar & Friends, and Better Read Than Dead for your continued support, and for letting me play in your beautiful windows. And a big hug and thank you to Tracey Deep for lending me some of her floral sculptures.

Last weekend Stef from Newspaper Taxi and I created a window display in her gorgeous store in Newtown (and had a party to celebrate it!), here is a sneak peek of the display…

…but more about that soon. For now, be sure to check out the window at Newspaper Taxi -  there is something you can add to it too (I’ll let Stef tell you about it when you go and visit).

This Saturday will be the very last window display event in Sydney to celebrate the launch of the book.  It will be at Little Paper Lane in Mona Vale. It’s exciting to wrap this month of events up on the Northern Beaches – my old stomping ground. On Thursday night I’ll be talking at Mona Vale Library – the very place I used to go to almost every afternoon after high school. And then Saturday we’ll have a party at Little Paper Lane- I’m so looking forward to being surrounded by family and locals, new friends and old – I hope you can come along! Check out the details right here. I wonder what I’ll create in Jayde’s window? I think since it’s my last, I’m going to go all out – Mona Vale, here I come!

a jumble of words, a jumble of thoughts and ideas…

PS a few people have asked what I use to write on the windows – I’m using posca pens in white, in different sizes, and I bought them at modern times on king st, newtown.You just need a bit of water and a rag to wipe them off glass. I find the pens are much easier to use than paint and a paint brush. Have fun!

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Posted in pia's photos, sydney May 23rd, 2011 by pia

what: tea cup & saucer where: revolver cafe, annandale why: delicious tea.

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Monsieur Vossot’s filet de canard
Posted in kitchen May 23rd, 2011 by guest blogger

all photos and recipes in this post by Marjorie Taylor from The Cook’s Atelier

At The Cook’s Atelier, we support the small farmers and artisan producers. Monsieur Vossot is our favorite artisan butcher in Beaune…

Monsieur Vossot’s filet de canard recipe:

4 – 6 ounce duck breast halves, skin lightly scored in a crosshatch pattern
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

With a paper towel, blot any moisture from the duck breasts.  Season both sides of each breast with a pinch of sea salt and a few grinds of black pepper.

Pour some olive oil into two large ovenproof frying pans over medium-low heat.  (If you have only one large pan, cook the duck in 2 batches).  Add the duck skin-side down.  Move the duck breast every few minutes to help them brown evenly.  As the fat is rendered, carefully, remove the excess.  Be sure to move the pan away from the heat when you remove the fat, since if any fat hits the flame, it will cause a flare-up; tilt the pan, remove the fat with a large kitchen spoon, and transfer it to a metal bowl.  Cook the duck for a total of 20 to 25 minutes until the skin is an even rich brown and very crisp.  The internal temperature of the breast should be about 115 degrees F.  Flip each breast and cook on the other side for about 30 seconds.

Put the duck skin-side down in the oven and cook for about 5 minutes.  The internal temperature should be 125 degrees for rosy medium rare.

Put the duck breasts skin-side down on the cooling rack and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before slicing.  Taste for seasoning and serve on warm plates.

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Note from Pia: follow Marjorie’s cooking school adventures on instagram & her facebook page – I love her photos!

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